While some part of income does represent value added to society, not all does. For as much as I recognize the part top notch IT development plays in our society, is Facebook development adding more value to society than a farmer growing food in an extent that the income of the engineer doing it should be 10 times that of the farmer (disclaimer: I’ve not researched the numbers I’m using, it’s meant as a rough representation of the magnitude of the discrepency between income levels)?
Independently of that, the idea behind marginal tax rates is that there are thresolds in the rewards you get with your income. The next dollar may be taxed at 60% but the income before that one dollar was taxed at a lower rate so high earners still get to keep much more than 40% of their total gains.
I’m not in their shoes but does that feel that much of a high price to pay for social stability and decent infrastructures that high earners would feel like it’s a loosing deal for them (genuinely asking, that’s a kind of thinking I’m not able to vizualize properly)?
Edit: Reformulation for clarity.